Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behaviour disorder (RBD), involving loss of the normal atonia during REM sleep and causing patients to “act out” their dreams, offers several promising research opportunities. Patients with RBD are at high risk of developing synuclein-mediated neurodegenerative disease, including Parkinson’s Disease, dementia with Lewy bodies DLB and multiple system atrophy. This provides several opportunities for future research, including: (i) investigations into other predictors of synucleinopathy, (ii) studies on the transition into the neurodegenerative diseases listed above, and (iii) neuro-protective therapy trials, due to the opportunity afforded for early intervention by detecting disease progression early on.
Postuma, RB. (2013). REM sleep behavior disorder and prodromal neurodegeneration - where are we headed? Tremor and Other Hyperkinetic Movements, 2013, Vol. 3. Epub March 26th 2013. (Click here to view the PubMed abstract).
[A brief reference to this item features in Dementia and Elderly Care: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWNHST), Volume 3 Issue 7, May 2013].